Monday, March 31, 2014

Rhino Quilt

So, I made a rhinoceros quilt.

It was a gift for my brother. (He likes it, by the way.)

I pieced the rhino using 2.5" squares cut from a Kona New Classic roll-up. The background is made of 12 cream neutral pieces (6 different fabrics). The rhino is machine appliqued to the background.
I machine quilted the rhino with swirls and variegated thread, and the background with a fairly open stipple and off-white thread. There are some detail lines hand stitched on the ear, eye, legs, and tail, but they don't show up very well.

rhino back
For the back, I pieced together the rest of the Kona strips in relatively rainbow order, and then put that rainbow in between a blue solid fabric from Connecting Threads and a tan fabric I got from a giveaway at guild meeting a while ago. The binding is an eggplant purple solid from Connecting Threads.

Here's a close-up of the quilting:
rhino back2

I started this quilt back in the summer and had a different (crazier) plan before I decided on the random color placement. I was hoping to finish it for a Christmas gift and then my sewing machine had to go to the shop for most of December. I thought I might be able to get it done for my brother's birthday in February, but I didn't. I did finally finish it and send it, but before I did, I decided I liked it so much that I needed to make another one to keep. I'll show you my progress so far in a couple days.

I would love to hear about the craziest quilt you've ever made!

Sunday, March 16, 2014

Rainbow Scrap Quilt

I finished up my rainbow scrap quilt on Friday night. I started sewing 6.5" scrap blocks in the summer of 2011 when I still lived in Kansas, and ended up with 120 of them at the Seattle MQG quilt retreat at the beginning of February. I made one more block at the retreat and sewed together the quilt top there. It's about 54" x 78".
rainbow scrap quilt 1 

This quilt has scraps going back a long way, here's a short list:
*fabric from my 4-H shirt (that went with lavender stirrup pants) when I was 12
*purple poly/cotton calico that I used to make a Barbie dress when I was 10
*a blue/red print that my mom made a dress for me out of when I was 5
*fabric from at least 3 baby dresses I made for my daughter
*fabric from my 9-year-old's baby blessing outfit
*fabrics from many of the baby quilts I've made for my kids and their cousins
and lots of other good stuff.

 rainbow quilt back 

I used the famous Ikea numbers fabric for the back. I was really happy that it was wide enough for the back of this quilt! I love making pieced backs for quilts, but it was nice to not worry about that this time. There is enough happening on the front of this quilt, I think.

 flower fmq 

I decided to do a more open quilting design this time, and came up with this flower and loop free motion quilting design. I think it was more difficult than doing a simpler all over design like loops or stippling, because I had to look ahead and figure out where the next flower should go. And the quilting wasn't always easy to see with such a busy quilt top. I kept track of my time and it took 207 minutes to quilt, and 5 bobbin changes. 
gray dot binding 

The binding is a sort of grungy gray dot fabric. And... there's a funny mistake in this picture, want to see up close?

quilting mistake 
While I was quilting, the edge of the backing fabric got flipped over and caught in the quilting stitches. I just trimmed the fabric close and left it for now. I was not in the mood to unpick anything when I got to the end of the quilting.

I'm so happy this quilt is finished!

And now I'm planning to try something else with my scraps for a while. I've already started cutting 2.5" squares from a lot of my scraps. I don't know what I'll make with them but I'll figure out something good.  What are you doing with your scraps?